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Detroit Tigers: 3 potential Casey Mize trades

Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Casey Mize looks on during the second inning against the Tampa Bay Rays. Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Casey Mize looks on during the second inning against the Tampa Bay Rays. Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /
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Casey Mize Trade Option Number 3 – The Tampa Bay Rays

Casey Mize
Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Luis Patino throws at Comerica Park. Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports /

The Tampa Bay Rays just won the AL East and posted the best regular season in franchise history. But, when they fell to Boston in the Division Series, critics were quick to blame their it-takes-a-village approach to pitching — Tampa used 15 different starters during the regular season, and just one of their pitchers topped 125 innings this year. That argument seems specious (the White Sox and Giants had traditional pitching rotations and suffered the same fate as the Rays), but Tampa does need to trim their pitching staff simply to avoid a massive roster crunch. As of this writing, the Rays have 52 players on their 40-man roster.

Free agency will clear up some of the logjam, but Tampa is so good at acquiring and developing talent that roster constraints have become an annual issue. This trade proposal is designed to help alleviate that by having Tampa send away three players currently on their 40-man roster (and a fourth who would likely be added) in exchange for two 40-man players and two more who don’t need to be added until the end of 2023. And, as a high-probability innings-eating starter, Casey Mize is almost a two-for-one swap on his own.

In return, the Detroit Tigers get the electric Luis Patiño, who is younger than Mize, has better pitch metrics, and shows solid control, but throws tons of fastballs and hasn’t found a viable third pitch yet. Austin Meadows is a 26-year-old lefty outfielder with power, patience, and strong traditional stats, but he’s getting more expensive as he enters his arbitration years, and he doesn’t offer much value away from the plate. Taylor Walls has the opposite issue, as a solid defender without a ton of offensive potential, and Ford Proctor is a left-handed hitter with decent power, good patience, and interesting versatility. He was a middle infielder in college and for most of pro ball, but this year he played more than half of his games as a catcher.

Free agent catcher options for the Detroit Tigers. dark. Next

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